What Does the Google +1 Button Mean for SEO

We have noticed that the large part of the information in this publication is outdated. This is why we have disabled all links in it.

Google, the internet giant based in California, has had a strangle hold on much of the online market for the past decade. Most would struggle to find a single person in the Western World who is not yet familiar with the Google Search Engine. In fact the search engine is so popular that the phrase 'Google it' has been adopted by many Gen-Yers.

SEO

In addition to their massive presence in the search marketplace, Google also commands a large percentage of the online advertising industry, generating revenues in the region of US$35 billion per annum.

Facebook, a relatively new comer to the internet, and center of popular film The Social Network, is quickly closing on Google's market. Currently Facebook ranks as the 2nd most visited website online globally and holds over 750 million member accounts. Facebook is beginning to threaten Google's market dominance in online advertising due to the huge volume of data that the social network holds about its members. While Google's advertising model focuses around what people are looking for, specifically using search queries, Facebook's model allows advertisers to utilize behavioural targeting. A Facebook advertiser can select very precise advertising audiences by focusing on: - Age - Gender - Location - Employment Type - Education Level - Likes and Dislikes

By selecting a narrow cross section of the global audience by one or all of the above variables, an advertiser can see significant improvement in their ROI when compared with search or conventional marketing.

This is where Google Plus enters the scene. In May Google released a limited Beta of their new social network, to approximately 10 Million users. Google Plus, similar to Facebook, allows users to create profiles, enter personal details, connect with friends and join a global community online. The Google +1 button is the equivalent of Facebook's Like button - allowing users to show their approval of an idea, concept, website or product and broadcast this to their network.

It's not a new concept that Google uses a number of user specific factors to influence their search results. These have historically included the user's location, past search history, bounce rate from certain sites, browser setting and a host of other signals to indicate whether or not a search result is likely to fit the user's specific requirements or reason for search.

While not officially announced as yet, the Google +1 button will affect the manner in which search results are returned to users. The very nature of a social network suggests that people who are connected will share similar likes, beliefs and ideas, and consequently are likely to be interested in the same websites, resources and search results.

It follows then, that the connections of a user who have historically +1ed any given search result will have these sites promoted up the list of future search results due to perceived validity and relevance of that result.

Fully analyze your backlink profile and build better links

So, when will this new ranking factor, or as Google now refers to them signal, start influencing search results?

That's a tough question, and it's likely only to be once the Google Plus and +1 button programs reach a critical mass. That is where the number of +1s reaches a volume and velocity that indicates considerable adoption by the searching public.

You can already see the impact of +1 within your own search results, i.e. complete a search; navigate to page 3 of the results and +1 a single result Google returned. Now complete the same search again, it's likely that the result you +1ed will be elevated within the new set of results. This is exactly the same behaviour we expect to see once Google brings +1 and Plus into full swing.

We expect that this will become a ranking factor around the end of the year, likely in time for Christmas shopping season.

What can you do to gain the maximum benefit from +1?

At present the +1 signal is only being used to influence a user's personal search results, but this is likely to change late this year so it's time to get started on a strategy to make the most of this opportunity. This way when Google flicks the switch you will receive all the benefits of being +1ed and you will surge ahead of your competitors within specific market segments.

By now your web developer or SEO firm should have already contacted you offering +1 integration; it's a good idea to get Facebook Like done at the same time. If not, get in touch with the team that manages your website and request them to place the +1 button prominently on your site. The button is pretty funky and modern and is not likely to do any damage to your branding or design. Make sure you are communicating with your clients, visitors and connections to ensure they +1 your site. The earlier you start work the sooner you will see results.

Rich the top of SERPs with quality backlinks

Rate This Article

How would you rate the quality of this content?
Currently rated: 2.6 out of 5 stars. 5 users have rated this article. Select your rating:
  • 2.6 out of 5 Stars
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

About The Author

Rich is head of SEO Perth for Zen Net Solutions, who are a leading Online Marketing Strategy agency

Related Articles

Bing vs Google

Bing vs. Google: Can Bing Compete?

For years now, Google has been the dominant force in search. Whether we are talking about market share or revenue derived from PPC advertising, Google reigns supreme.Today we are going to talk about Google’s position as the search king and, whether or not Bing will ever be able to legitimately compete with them and what effect that will have on SEO strategies.
Google

Can Google Truly Make Quality Content King Of The Web?

For those webmasters and e-marketers who can remember a web without Google, life was much less complicated and a lot less tumultuous back then. Since Google came onto the scene and became the dominant search engine in the world… things have changed drastically.
SEO

How to Grow Your Twitter Following

Growing a large following is something many new Twitter users struggle with. They see all these big accounts with 20, 50 or even 100K followers and wonder how did they ever get there? Today we will give you some tips and tools on how to grow your following steadily and we’ll also make sure that you stay within the Twitter guidelines to avoid account suspension.
Google

Embracing Google's Mayday Update

SEO copywriting has changed dramatically over the past two or three years. Then, it was all meta tags and keyword density. Now, SEO copywriting is more about quality inbound links and useful content that reads smoothly.
SEO

18 SEO Myths Debunked

SEO is no more a hidden art. It has developed well in past 10 years and many things have changed around in the working of search engines and SEO techniques. Best as well as Worst thing about SEO is that techniques in SEO changes quite frequently but the goal remains the same to get Quality traffic from search engines.
Fully analyze your backlink profile and build better links